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Staten Island Residents Worry That Invading Black Vultures May Prey on Their Pets



An invading bird has some on Staten Island crying fowl.

Residents in the Midland Beach neighborhood have noticed more and more black vultures popping up over the past few weeks, and fear they could prey on the pets that live there — but there isn’t much that anyone can do to get rid of them.

Deena Tomasulo has an 85-pound dog, but the birds are not fazed at all by the canine. One vulture was seen perched on a telephone pole right outside Tomasulo’s home Friday evening.

“All I do know is these huge creatures that have a wingspan of about five feet have invaded Staten Island,” she said. “They perch on the roofs and stare at the animals — the feral cats, racoons and opossums. I have never witnessed an attack yet, thank God…I just don’t want any of the feral cats to get harmed, people have little small dogs. And if you put the dog in your yard, these birds will swoop in and attack.”

For weeks, neighbors have been snapping pictures and videos, hoping to spread the word. To them, the big birds mean serious business.


“Yea it’s serious! These birds are huge and can carry away a small animal!” said Tomasulo.

Michael Illuzi said that neighbors warned him that the creatures were lurking on his roof. The vultures have large talons, and Illuzi has small pets.

“They haven’t really bothered us. My cats are inside,” said Illuzi. “I don’t think they’re that bold where they’ll swoop down when a person is standing next to your pet.”

For now, families said that all they can really do is alert the public to be aware of what’s happening. Because black vultures are a protected species, they can’t touch the birds — they just hope the birds don’t touch them.

“The thing is, they’re federally protected, so there’s not much we can do. They migrated from somewhere I’m guessing — how to get rid of them, that I don’t know” said TKTK.

Source: NBC New York


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